To the north and south of Mombasa there are superb beaches and a number of pockets of tourist development but the coast is not yet developed in the Florida or Spanish Costa sense. For many visitors the resort areas represent little more than sun, sea, sand and you can, of course, have a wonderful time on the beaches doing nothing very much, but there's a lot more to do if you want.

Most obviously, the beaches are the launch pad for one of the most beautiful coral reefs in the world. Even with the most limited equipment – a snorkel and mask, easily obtained almost anywhere – you can still enter what really is another world, either taking a boat or swimming out to discover sections of reef for yourself. If you are interested in diving, there are a good number of dive centres along the coast catering for both the experienced diver and the beginner. There are many dhow trip operators offering excursions that include snorkelling, diving, seafood lunch and the chance to swim with dolphins. A glass bottom boat is another way to travel over to the reef, particularly good for people who cannot swim but do not want to miss out on the experience of seeing life under water.

For extreme water sports fans, there are two extreme water sports centres, not far from Kijiji Cottages, offering a range of activities including air gliding, waterskiing, wind surfing, jet skis and banana boats. Big game fishing is also available.

There is a string of hotels along the coast which provide the usual amenities. However, if you want to visit the coast and avoid the bigger tourist complexes, it can be better to rent a cottage. These are often holiday homes belonging to people who live and work in Nairobi and are generally more pleasant places to stay. A cook is provided so you don’t have to cook for yourself.

Kijiji Cottages is comprised of a selection of privately owned cottages situated on Diani Beach, with elevated views of the Indian Ocean. Located 25km south of Mombasa town, Diani Beach is one of Kenya's finest beach resort areas. The palm-fringed, white sand and coral beach is blessed with a coral reef and clear turquoise sea, both of which are perfect for scuba diving and snorkelling. The Swahili-style cottages with makuti (coconut palm) thatch roofs nestle amongst the mature gardens and indigenous forest. Most cottages are furnished with handcrafted furniture and have bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms.

Fresh fish and seafood are brought to your door straight from the sea by the local fishermen and a personal cook is available to prepare and cook all your meals. Local shops and a choice of excellent restaurants are within walking distance of Kijiji. Plenty of night-time entertainment can be found in the hotels, beach bars and discos. There is a secluded swimming pool and an 18-hole golf course is only a 5 minute walk away.

There is some resident wildlife including nocturnal bushbabies, colobus, Syke’s and vervet monkeys and suni antelope. At high tide turtles sometimes swim very close to the water's edge right in front of Kijiji Cottages.